SAN PEDRO (CBSLA) — A collection of items said to be intended for the homeless has been growing steadily outside of a San Pedro home for the past 15 years, but now neighbors are concerned the owner’s hoarding could cause a safety problem.
Adel Billberry, 83, can often be found sitting in his front yard in the 500 block of MacArthur Avenue protecting his belongings and hoping to sell an old radio or microwave, but some of his neighbors say it’s time for the clutter to go.READ MORE: Riverside County Sheriff's Department Releases Body-Cam Footage Of Fatal Shooting
“We don’t know what to do anymore,” neighbor Mike Miklavcic said. “It’s not just me. The neighbors on the other side, behind him, because if you do in the back, stuff is stacked up to the top of the house and there’s just neighbors all around, and most of us have just given up.”
Miklavcic said he has lived next to Billberry for 26 years. He said the hoarding started after Billberry lost his wife and had to undergo major heart surgery after suffering from health issues. Throughout it all, Miklavcic said items continued to pile up, spewing from the lawn to the sidewalk and even the street.
“I mean, you can’t go through the sidewalk,” Miklavcic said. “People walk their dogs, and they have to go out on the road. And it’s getting worse, to be honest with you.”READ MORE: TikTok Star Anthony Barajas Dies After Corona Movie Theater Shooting
Other neighbors said Billberry is the sweetest man, but they were also concerned about the safety of having all of the items there.
The city says the homeowner has been prosecuted, and that the judge keeps postponing his hearing. As for Billberry, he said he was cleaning out his garage when he got sick, and just hasn’t put the items back.
“It’s in the process of being cleaned up now,” he said. “Every day.”MORE NEWS: LA Valley College Mulls Vaccine Mandates For Returning Students and Staff
The city said it is trying to do what it can to legally remove the items from the yard. Billberry said he was told he had until October to clean up the area.